Germany dominated the FEI Dressage European Championships for Children and U25.
It’s all about team work!
In the U25 team competition at the FEI Dressage European Championships near Budapest (HUN), the German team consisting of Raphael Netz on Ferdinand BB, Helen Erbe on Carlos, Alexa Westendarp on Four Seasons and Alina Schrader on Paola took home the gold while the Danish girls, Thea Bech on Dionisos, Josefine Hoffmann on Hønnerups Driver, Karoline Rohmann on Jakas Don Louvre and Laura Kristine Thorup on Blue Hors Veneziano took the team silver. Finally, the Dutch took the bronze with Febe van Zwambagt on Fernandell MS, Thalia Rockx on Verdi de la Fazenda, Jessica Poelman on Chocolate Cookie R.D.P. and Julia Bouthoorn on Choice Finch on the team.
Hat trick for Netz…
The Under 25 Grand Prix riders showed off their skills in the FEI U25 Grand Prix Freestyle.
It was the third gold medal that Raphael Netz (GER) could put around his neck after he confidently showed the well-schooled gelding Ferdinand BB in a beautiful freestyle that was rewarded with remarkable 79.435%. The silver medallist Alejandro Oliva Lazaro (ESP) had a lovely freestyle on the expressive chestnut gelding Decor and showed a high degree of difficulty but unfortunately a few mistakes placed the partnership behind Netz with 78.345%. Bronze medal was won by Thea Bech (DEN) on the KWPN gelding Dionisos with 76.670%.
Thereby, the podium spots had not changed from the U25 Grand Prix the day before where gold, silver and bronze also went to Raphael Netz and Ferdinand BB with 73.462%, Alejandro Oliva Lazaro and Decor with 72.615% and Thea Bech on Dionisos with 72.333%, respectively.
On his Instagram Raphael Netz wrote: “Triple European Champion! Ferdl and I were also able to win the freestyle! Ferdl that was absolutely amazing!! You gave me such a nice last ride!”, then Netz continues with a special thanks to Olympic champion Jessica von Bredow-Werndl for letting him ride her second horse Ferdinand BB while she was pregnant, “Dear Jessica, I don't know how to thank you for entrusting me with Ferdinand during your pregnancy! Our trip was short but all the more beautiful! Thank you thank you thank you!!!!”.
Accurate and beautiful riding was seen in the Children Category at the FEI Dressage European Championships this week where the young athletes featured good position and posture on well-ridden horses inspiring great hope for the future of Dressage.
Germany wins gold and Belgium takes historic bronze
It was another team Gold for Germany as three of the four Children riders on the team delivered impressive scores over 80%: Lotta Plaas on Balsamico with 81.150%, Marie Maass Alessa on Floricella 5 with 81.684%, Martha Raupach on Jack Sparrow with 83.509% and Catherine Bartels Eve on Freispiel. The team silver medal was secured by the Dutch team with Sophie van Norel on Itrina, Britt Kikkert-van Der Linde on Dark Knight Texel, Robin Dicker on Lindenburgs Helena and Isabella Karajkovic on Wert's Snowflake. It was a historic day as Max Van Durme riding Imke Niki V.s, Anna Van Den Eynde riding Olympic Aroma Krack, Chloë Cleymans riding Jondonderry and Amber Hennes riding Allegro V/H Trichelhof secured the first team bronze medal for Belgium since the start of the FEI Dressage European Championships for Children in 2015.
Martha Raupach (GER) and the lovely chestnut gelding Jack Sparrow danced their way to the top with 83.596% putting them ahead of fellow countrywoman and silver-medallist Lotta Plaas (GER) and Balsamico on 78.707%, who was then closely followed by Sophie Van Norel (NED) riding the elegant and uphill mare Itrina to 78.551% for the bronze medal.
On her Instagram Martha Raupach wrote: “Dreams came true! Double European champion 2022 (…) Thank you to everyone who made this possible”
The FEI Dressage European Championship for U25 returns to Pilisjászfalu next year from 11-16 July and will be held alongside Young Riders, while the Children category pairs up with the Juniors in Kronberg (GER) from 20-23 July 2023. .
Full results available here.
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